Volkswagen Golf Plus

The Essentials

  • Price from £17,710
  • What Car? says: 3 star rating
  • Fuel economy: up to 65.7mpg
  • What is it? If an ordinary Golf isn't quite big enough and you can't face a 'mini-MPV', this slightly inflated version of the popular hatchback may just do the trick

Great

  • More headroom and flexibility than a standard Golf
  • Enough safety and security kit to calm the most paranoid driver
  • Almost as good to drive as the normal Golf

Gripes

  • More expensive to buy and sell than a standard Golf
  • Forward visibility could be better
  • Door mirrors kick up some noise at higher speeds
  • Drive

    Almost as good as a normal Golf but youll tell it apart as the tall body leans more through corners and the door mirrors kick up more noise at speed

  • Inside

    We like the raised driving position, but not the way the front-end design restricts the view out of the front corners

  • Safety

    All present and correct, from stability control to headrests that help prevent whiplash plus a raft of security features to keep your car safe

  • Reliability

    Mechanical bits have been tried and tested, so there should be no worries

  • Space

    Juggle rear legroom and boot space with the sliding rear seats; all that headroom is handy for child-seat access

  • Standard and extras

    All are well equipped but we like the SE which adds cruise control and a partly automatic parking system  look, no hands!

  • What's it like to drive?

    The VW Golf Plus is a taller, slightly boxier version of the brilliant Golf hatchback, and as such, it's very similar to drive. That means strong, frugal engines (we like the 1.4 TSI best due to its flexibility and economy), a comfortable ride, neat, enjoyable handling and controls that are beautifully weighted. Changes demand compromises however, and the extra height in the body makes the car lean a shade more around corners. It's a little noisier than the standard car, too, as the wind rushes around the door mirrors at higher speeds. Still, being so similar to a Golf hatchback, it's still a very pleasant car to drive.

  • What's it like inside?

    The tall body of the VW Golf Plus will suit very tall passengers and ease the aching backs of anyone wrestling children into car seats. As well as having more headroom than the regular model, you get extra flexibility that comes in the form of the 60/40 splitting rear seat, each section of which slides to juggle space between rear legroom and the boot. It's handy, but it can't rival the cleverness of the best MPVs around.
    The driving position has lots of adjustment, and the plain, simply-styled dash is pretty much idiot-proof. However, tiny quarter-light front windows and chunky windscreen pillars hamper your visibility when pulling out of junctions or cornering.

  • How reliable is it?

    The Golf Plus has was rated average for reliability by owners in the latest JD Power survey, and was ranked as the second most popular MPV overall. Although it doesn't feature in the Euro NCAP crash tests, stability control, six airbags and active headrests offer reassurance on the safety front.

  • Should I buy one?

    The premium you pay for a VW Golf Plus over a standard Golf isn't huge, but don't expect to recoup it when you come to sell as the Plus is not as popular. Running costs will be similar. Even the standard car is respectably equipped but SE models add a useful automatic parking feature that helps steer the car into a space.